By Joseph F. Kess
The authors current a accomplished review of earlier learn in ambiguity within the box of psycholinguistics. Experimental effects have usually been equivocal in permitting a call among the single-reading speculation and the multiple-reading speculation of processing of ambiguous sentences. this article reports the arguments and experimental ends up in help of every of those perspectives, and extra investigates the contributions of context and thematic constraints within the strategy of ambiguity solution. statement is additionally made at the attainable hierarchical ordering of hassle within the therapy of ambiguity, in addition to seriously comparable issues like bias, person variations, basic cognitive techniques for facing multiphase representations, and the inherent modifications among lexical and syntactic ambiguity.
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Indeed, what is at tractive about this approach is that it takes into account the fact that lexical items which are ambiguous do not have the two or more readings in equal proportion to one another. Rather, it is the case that even in isolation there is statistical hierarchy in which process ing takes place, and this is the ordering of strategies that normally occurs. This provides a ready explanation of our garden path sentences, 57 THE ORDERED ACCESS APPROACH as well as forming one of the more salient performance criticisms of Katzian semantic feature hierarchies.
For example, Foss' sentence (1970) The shooting his friends since they all of the prince thought that dumbfounded his he was an excellent subjects and marksman. Even so, it may be noted that this sentence still remains ambiguous, and though the likely reading seems to shift to the second reading of the prince as shooter, rather than victim, it still can be given the second interpretation. This was true of Garrett's (1970) sentence exam ple too, for John's uncle showed him a whole roomful of walking sticks simply contains within itself the expectation that, on the basis or prior experience, the interpretation as sticks for walking rather than sticks that walk is the likely choice, though both interpretations re- 48 AMBIGUITY IN PSYCHOLINGUISTICS main plausible.
Their experiment established bias for possible strings from anagrams; for example, both The mother loved the tiny baby and The tiny baby loved the mother are possible from the same anagram set, but the first is more likely, given subjects' bias.
Ambiguity in Psycholinguistics by Joseph F. Kess